David Blatt May Be The Next Greg Popovich


After a 3-15 start for the San Antonio Spurs in 1996, Greg Popovich, then president of basketball operations fired coach Bob Hill and named himself in charge. From there, a dynasty that still lasts to this day was born. Five championships and countless playoff runs later, and coach Pop is regarded as one of the greatest to pace that sideline out of bounds in the history of the game.

The San Antonio Spurs have always been noted for playing the game the right way. Over the years, the team never “bought” a championship by forming “Big 3’s” or anything of that nature. It was the core nucleus of Tim Duncan, Manu Ginobili and Tony Parker, all drafted by the Spurs throughout the years, that have led this team to greatness with their stellar play.

Coach Greg Popovich
Coach Greg Popovich

Coach Pop’s style is unique. He’s not flashy, but a man that simply has one goal – win. And win he has. His 967-443 record over his elusive 14 years of coaching proves just that. A champion in ’99, ’03, ’05, ’07, & ’14.

Pop isn’t afraid to yell at anyone. Even stars such as Tim Duncan will take an ear-full on the occasion. He’s mean, he’s tough, but he gets the job done. Year after year.

This winter in Cleveland, the Cavaliers will be welcoming our beloved star LeBron James back home. Additionally, the team named David Blatt to replace Mike Brown as the new head coach for the Wine & Gold. Blatt was a very successful coach overseas for many years. He’s a six-time Israel Cup Champion, a five-time Israel League Champion, Italian League Champion, and most recently a Euroleague Champion as well. The list goes on and on. Like coach Pop, winning is no stranger to David Blatt either.

It’s not secret that Blatt’s Cavaliers are laced with talent. Very, very, very, young talent. Kyrie Irving, Dion Waiters, Tristan Thompson, Anthony Bennett and Andrew Wiggins are all just starting their careers in the association. Mixed with the returning James and other hungry veterans, and these young stars have the potential to become great players for at least a decade.

So here lies my claim. I believe the Cavaliers new head coach David Blatt has the potential to become the next Greg Popovich.

If everything turns out right, we can expect consistent championship runs for many years to come. LeBron will lead us for the time being, but the key to my claim is the young talent can keep the Cavs as a contender even after he retires down the road.

We could be talking 15 years of great basketball. Sound familiar?

In 1996, no one expected Greg Popovich to turn out as one of, if not the greatest NBA Head Coach of all time…but it happened. Here in 2014, David Blatt has one hell of a roster to work with moving forward. Good luck.

-Zach Shafron

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